Saturday, May 30, 2009


Ok, maybe frazzlement is not a proper word, but I'm pretty sure that's what I've got. It's like bewilderment and overwhelmed and excited (and more) all wrapped up into one package of me. A big case of it. That's why I haven't been talking much... that, and the internet has been less than cooperative.

I'm 'frazzle'd -
1. To become worn away along the edges.
2. To become exhausted physically or emotionally.
We're approaching the end of the school year and there are a lot of activities, responsibilities, extra-curricular events, etc. going on.

We're soon to leave our friends of almost five years... longest we've ever lived anywhere, so we've actually met, learned the names of our neighbors, and made friends with them, so we've had goodbye plans to fit in to the schedule, of course.

We just went through the pack-out of our house. All that's left is suitcase/carry-on stuff, a couple boxes of stuff to be mailed, stuff loaned by the Embassy (furniture and an extra delivery of pots, pans, linens, etc), and stuff to toss at the last minute.

Work is going to require some goodbye formalities and festivities.

The truck is being packed off to the port this week.

Oh, and there is paperwork, and inspections and Dr. appointments, and the need to find a place to stay temporarily, but long term, in a decent enough place so we don't go insane, but that doesn't cost more than the mortgage of the White House, when we land in DC. .. and transportation... and...


I'm 'lement'ing (I guess that's supposed to be 'lament'ing, but whatever... just take 'lament', and squish a little 'dement' into it and that's my excuse for the 'e'.) -

1. To express grief for or about; mourn: lament a death.
2. To regret deeply; deplore: He lamented his thoughtless acts.
1. To make (a person) insane.
2. To cause (a person) to lose intellectual capacity.

I still miss our kitties terribly. I still can't believe they're gone. It hurts like anything to move a bookshelf and find a puffball, jingle bell, or twisted up pipe-cleaner that I know they threw under there. We still have one carrier to give away and it's hard to walk by and see it empty.

I am also not looking forward to leaving all the good people here. I mentioned our friends above, but those friends also include the guard staff, the commissary personnel, the facilities, SPM people and a lot of other wonderful folks at the Embassy that we've come to know, the people at the club, Ayman, our driver (with his own cars... I recommend him and will provide his number if anyone is interested), the teachers and other staff at the school, Dave the mechanic (also highly recommended, just let me know if you're interested) and Ahmad (our do-it-all guy in the building), who is always there to help, or at least say good morning to us and the kids, who has become like family too. It's hard to say so many goodbyes!

I am also going to miss Egypt - oh yes, there are things I am happy to leave, like the pollution, the dirt, the trash on the roads, the traffic, the noise... but, really, nobody's perfect. In general, the positives outweigh these negatives easily. I like hot weather (although I miss the rain). I never lived in a desert before and this was a very interesting experience, the Nile is spectacular.... and of course, there are all those amazing historical things.... but I'm really going to miss two special things about Cairo. One is the laid-back attitude. If you can learn to just go with the flow, it's nice. Nothing is totally stress-free, but there's a good attitude of 'don't worry, it will work out for the best, god willing...'. Don't get me wrong, I'm all for taking the bull by the horns, charge of the situation, the initiative, blah blah blah... but there's a lot to be said for accepting that what will be, will be, and just chilling out about things. And two, I will miss the people of Egypt. I have felt VERY "Welcome in Egypt!". Sincerely so. No matter where we go or what we are doing, I have always run into people who feel it is their personal responsibility to make us feel welcome and cared for. Again, there are exceptions... there are some hating and hateful, ignorant and harassing types out there, but they do not represent the majority of the people we meet.

Less seriously, I lament the fact that we weren't that organized for this packout. We did ok, but I'd give us only a 90% grade. Yes, this IS really a good score. And the movers did an excellent job (Sea Bird - we recommend them). But I take 10% off for our not chucking more crap, not having things better organized, etc... I know we have a good excuse, see all the above(!), but I'd hoped we could have had it a bit more together.

ah well...

I assume I will remain in this state of frazzlement through most of the summer. I'm getting used to it. Being exhausted means I sleep well, but if I'm too wound up to sleep, I have plenty to occupy myself with while I am awake. I know that my white hair grows in thick streaks so it looks like I have 'highlights' without any of that messy salon business. I also know we are blessed to have the technology to keep in touch with our friends once we leave... and who knows, maybe we'll be back one day :)


junglemama said...

Oh Connie,

This is my favorite post yet of yours. I really...... really felt what was on your mind and in your your heart when I read it. Thanks. I didn't realize that you were leaving for good..... I thought it was just another extended vacation. So sorry about your kitties, I remember when we lost my beloved Meme nearly 10 years ago. It was heartbreaking.

I love how you write the negatives about Egypt but remind us that no one is perfect.

Thinking of you today.....

MsTypo said...


Pack out day sucks because it means the end is near. And everything you hated about Egypt is somehow endearing all of a sudden. I totally, totally understand. **Hugs**

Connie said...

Christine - Losing a pet is tough. You never forget. I know the pain eases, but your furry friend always stays in your heart. And see how frazzled I am!! I haven't even kept my own dear family completely in the information loop :D ! I've probably been grumbling about things on Facebook (which I know you've said you don't have time for) or something, or I was just assuming you could read my mind... I promise I'd've filled you in, eventually :) . We will land in the US soon, stay awhile, then head out for another post. We have no further schedule at this point though... which adds to the confusion. We're in 'figure it out as we go' mode.

Cairo Typ0 - No, I really hate the pollution, no last minute endearments there ;-D !! But yes, the packout is clincher. When your stuff gets packed up and carted off... that's when it hits, you KNOW it's real. We've been talking to the kids, but they don't really remember going through a move. Brian went around looking a bit shell-shocked the day after we packed. He's adjusting though. Thanks for the hugs... they do help! :)

betty-NZ said...

I have moved a lot in my life, so maybe it's become less upsetting as the years go by, but there is always a part of you that stays behind, no matter how long it's been.
Moving isn't easy and not knowing where you will go next is probably worse, but it seems to me that you have learned to 'go with the flow' and enjoy the moments when you have them.
It will all look better in a month or so! Hindsight is like that.

Simple Answer said...

Um. I read through your blog looking to see if I missed something. I am sooooooo very behind. And I'm wondering to myself, how many people have children named Brian and Honor. Not many. So I think I know.

Connie said...

Betty1 - we are actually used to moving more often. Not the kids, but we are. This staying in one place for more than two years in a row has knocked us off kilter... we've started to grow roots through the pot - Makes us harder to transplant!

Simple Answer - I understand being behind!! I feel swamped, but I see the light at the end. We're going down the to-do list and it's actually getting fairly short. Can't wait to end this 'moving' business, and just be moved there :)

Mama Seoul said...

I just sent you Eva's birth announcement. Hope it reaches you before you go. I thought it had gone into the mail, but it got tucked away some place. Oh well!

Keep blogging and keep us posted on your move!

Connie said...

Mama Seoul - I hope it makes it! Mail can be very fast. If not, I'm sure it will catch up. Thanks :) ! And I will no doubt be blogging through the move!

Tina in CT said...

A couple of questions.

1. Are you visiting family for the summer in the US?

2. Where are you moving to before the school year starts up again?

3. What does your husband do as you mention the US Embassy?

4. I know what you mean about missing your pets. I miss my dog that suddenly died in March of last year. No dog will ever take her place. I hope that once you are settled that you can get another cat to fill your lives.

5. Have a safe trip back to the States.

3 Bay B Chicks said...

Such an amazing journey you are on, Connie. I can't believe that the time is almost here for you to return to the U.S. Wow!

Keep blogging and know that I will be thinking of you and your family.

Best of luck!


Connie said...

Tina in CT -

1. Are you visiting family for the summer in the US? Hope so! And there's a special wedding in Florida I want to be at.

2. Where are you moving to before the school year starts up again? I haven't announced yet. :)

3. What does your husband do as you mention the US Embassy? Sorry, fair question, but I do not believe that the details of my husband's job, or anyone's for that matter, belong on a personal blog...unless you own your own business... then blog away! I feel that since it isn't my business, I have no business to make it your business ;-)

4. I know what you mean about missing your pets. I miss my dog that suddenly died in March of last year. No dog will ever take her place. I hope that once you are settled that you can get another cat to fill your lives.I'm sorry to hear of your dog :( No, we never forget. And that's good. Honor and I were joking around about seeing our angel kitties running around the house yesterday. We do miss them.

5. Have a safe trip back to the States.Thank you!!

Connie said...

Francesca - I can't believe we are moving!! But it is exciting to be on the go again :) I will definitely continue blogging... when I have time to sit... when I can get my laptop away from the kids... etc :)

♥ Braja said...

Hey Connie, nice to see you :)

Expat mom said...

I can´t imagine how difficult it must be to pick up and leave after settling so much in five years. For your kids, it must be particularly hard, they probably don´t remember much of other place, do they?

Here´s hoping your next place will be even better than Egypt and you`ll be fascinated all over again. I´m looking forward to reading about wherever it is that you`re heading next!

Vanessa Rogers said...

Good luck in your move. It is hard to leave behind friends, but new adventures are ahead.

Tina in CT said...

You must be enroute to the US as it's been a long time since we've seen a blog and I miss them. Hope you're having a good time visiting friends and family here in the States.

I'm sure we all look forward to hearing where your new home will be. I'm sure it will be exciting and offer your family new adventures. And, your blog readers will get to read about a new part of the world.